Tailoring visual images to fit: Value creation in persuasive messages



The present studies aimed to extend Regulatory Fit Theory in the domain of persuasive communication by (a) using printed advertisement images without any verbal claim, instead of purely or mostly verbal messages; (b) selecting the images to fit the distinct orientations of regulatory mode rather than regulatory focus; and (c) priming regulatory mode orientation instead of relying on chronic prevalence of either locomotion or assessment orientation. We found that recipients primed with a locomotion orientation experienced fit, and were more persuaded, when exposed to “dynamic” versus “static” visual images; conversely, recipients primed with an assessment orientation experienced fit and were more persuaded when exposed to “static” versus “dynamic” images. Our findings show that the experience of fit can be induced by visual messages, resulting in positive effects in terms of attitude toward product advertisement and estimated price of advertised products. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.